REScoop participated in the "Clean energy for all Europeans" event

REScoop participated in the "Clean energy for all Europeans" event

Yesterday REScoop participated in the “Clean Energy for all Europeans. What’s hot and what’s not for consumers” event organised by The European Consumer Organisation (BEUC). Lots of interesting, thought-provoking discussions. Below a short summary of the main topics and questions the panelists tried to tackle.

Jeppe Kofod (MEP) set the scene by presenting the steps forward to deliver a consumer friendly, future-proof energy union.

In an opening dialogue Klaus-Dieter Borchardt (DG Energy) and Monique Goyens (BEUC) examined the impact of the European Commission’s recent legislative package on consumers and discussed whether it meets consumers’ expectations. They focused on 3 most important issues about the package: more information, better empowerment, better protection. Monique Goyens stressed that the potential for self generation is very high in Europe but that without a stable framework we might not be able to fully take advantage of it.

In the first panel discussion Theresa Griffin (MEP), Kristian Ruby (Eurelectric), Ivo Mechels (Euroconsumers) and Lewis Shand Smith (Ombudsman Services) focused on consumer problems such as switching and bundled offers. Panelists discussed three main concerns about switching: the process, the time it takes and the fees being charged. When moving on to the bundled offers, they recognised that it often provides simplicity and savings to consumers but can also lead to complex contracts, higher bills and lock-in situations.  Theresa Griffin argued that energy should not be considered a commodity but a basic social right.

The second panel focused on active consumers and data protection. Benedek Javor (MEP), Julien Janes, Isabelle Buscke (Verbraucherzentrale Bundesverband) and Rik Temmink (Green Energy Options) looked closer into the ground rules for consumer engagement: predictability, consumer remuneration and control. They finally talked about the risks and opportunities posed by big amounts of data being generated, stored and distributed by smart meters. Benedek Javor pointed out that energy communities, REScoops included, will become increasingly important.

programme (1).pdf